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My Winter Compost Bucket (plus security, compost style!)

alternately titled, “How I Avoid Carrying Compost Out Into My Cold Backyard Every Day” or, “The Lazy Composter”.

In the summertime, I don’t really mind taking the compost out every day…I just have to throw a pair of flip-flops on and take a quick trek out to the backyard (well, it’s sort of quick. Our kitchen is on the upper story and our compost bin is on the ground, so I have to carry compost through the house and out the back door. Have I mentioned I am not a fan of the split-foyer house design??)

In the wintertime, especially this winter, because we have actually had snow that’s stuck around for a while, I do mind taking it out every day.

So, I keep an old spackle bucket on my deck.

And I just let it sit there until it’s filled to the brim, at which point I take it downstairs and out to the bin. In the summertime, this would never work, because 5.5 colonies worth of fruit flies would be hanging out in the bin by the time it was full. In the cold of winter, though, fruit flies are NEVER a problem.

Anyways, this simple solution makes me much less tempted to throw compostable material into the trash can while the weather is cold.


Also, I was thinking that someone who is super worried about information security, and is concerned that even shredding isn’t enough, would feel better if they composted the shreddings. Because when you turn your shreds into compost…

and use the compost to grow vegetables in your backyard…

it’d be pretty darn difficult for anyone to steal the information on the papers. 😉

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Clay Williamson

Monday 21st of March 2011

What kind of shredder works best for using the shreds in your compost? Crosscut or strip cut?

Thanks, great article.

Clay "Shredder" Williamson

Thursday 17th of February 2011

Great idea to recycle paper shreds. Tasty way too, those peppers looked great :D


Friday 4th of February 2011 all have gotten me curious about composting, but I live in a townhouse - as in no backyard. The compost would have to been in my garage...would this still work?


Saturday 7th of August 2010

I can do you one better on the shredded paper use. . .use it as animal bedding. No one will ever want to steal your private information after your pet hamster pooped on it, and then, once soiled*, you can still add it to the compost bin. Really saves a lot of money if you have pets because the cost of litter and bedding adds up fast, but fortunately not as fast as the mountain of old bank statements and junk mail builds up. You can add a little baking soda to keep the odors down, and baking soda is perfectly safe for composting.

*Supposedly you shouldn't add cat litter to the bin because of the bacteria found in cat poop, but if your compost pile gets hot enough, and you flush the cat poop daily anyway (who can stand that smell?), you're probably ok to add the peed on paper shreds.


Sunday 7th of February 2010

I do the same thing. But what does happen is it freezes. I was alllll the way to the compost pile, lifted the bucket and it wouldn't budge. So I left it upside down until our January thaw. Now it happened again. Good thing I have more than one bucket.

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